Dutch walkers saunter by on their way through the country

A group of 250 Dutch visitors will be spending a day in the Central Borders on Monday as part of their 2012 United Kingdom Walking Challenge.

The Dutch group, from the Royal Dutch Walking Association, are on their third bi-annual international walking challenge, and their day in the Borders is one of the six walking days in Edinburgh, Northumberland, Shropshire, Wellingborough and South Wales.

The group will then spend two days at the Paralympics, before ending their two-week UK visit.

Their walking challenge in this region is a 13-mile circular route, starting and ending in Melrose, going via the Borders Abbeys Way to Mertoun Bridge, before returning via St Cuthbert’s Way to a short reception at the Greenyards in Melrose.

Walking Support, which organises guided walks, has been involved in the planning of this event for more than a year, with the support of the Melrose Paths Group.

A spokesperson said: “This should be a wonderful opportunity to showcase the Scottish Borders to our Dutch visitors.

Scottish Borders Council have also played a valuable part in the support of the walk, and we are hoping that the local tourism businesses and traders will make use of the Greenyards reception to promote their services and facilities to the walkers.”